Albert Lea Seed House Oat Production Guide - Page 10

Plant Requirements Magnesium will be removed from the soil at a rate of about 4lbs/A for the production of 100bu. of grain. If straw is being removed a greater reduction will occur. Integrated Pest Management Weeds, diseases, and insects can take a major toll on crop production. Integrated pest management is an important plan to help control the major pests that affect oats. The University of California, Davis does an excellent job creating a strong definition: “Integrated pest management (IPM) is an ecosystem-based strategy that focuses on long-term prevention of pests or their damage through a combination of techniques such as biological control, habitat manipulation, modification of cultural practices, and use of resistant varieties. Pesticides are used only after monitoring indicates they are needed according to established guidelines, and treatments are made with the goal of removing only the target organism. Pest control materials are selected and applied in a manner that minimizes risks to human health, beneficial and non-target organisms, and the environment.” “University of California.” Technical Definition of Integrated Pest Management – UC IPM. Web. Nov. 2015 An effective IPM program will use current, comprehensive information on the life cycles of pests and their interaction with the environment. This information, in combination with available pest control methods, is used to manage pest damage by the most economical means and with the least possible hazard to people, property and the environment. For an example of an Integrated Pest Management Conversation Activity Plan, please visit the link below: http://www.grainmillers.com/images/pageimages/sustainabilityportal/IntegratedPestManagementPlan.pdf Weed Control The most commonly recognized weed control tactics within oat production include: natural characteristics of oats, herbicide applications, and mechanical controls. Control of weeds is most effective during the lag phase of growth. Once the weed has entered the phase of exponential growth, it becomes more difficult to implement proper control. A graph of weed growth phases is shown below. Typically the most difficult weeds to control are wild oats and Canadian thistle. Natural Characteristics Oats have the ability to germinate in cool soils which means they can be planted early. Early planting provides many benefits to the oat crop, one of which is the germination before many weed seeds. When the crop has the ability to germinate and establish early, it will be able to provide better competition against weeds. Early growth and broad leaves will close the canopy early before the establishment of weeds. Photo from Adam Davis It is reported that oats also provide an allelopathic “(the chemical inhibition of one plant acting as a germination or growth inhibitor)” 2 effect that reduces germina10 tion of many weeds. This benefit can be evident for more than just the oat season. Rye and alfalfa are also